Part 1 – In the 7 steps to starting a successful meditation program


The first step


Developing the right mindset is essential for you to find success with your meditation program. Having the right mindset means to have a clear understanding of all of the mental and emotional realizations and transformations that are needed in order to have a fulfilling practice and reach your goals with the training.

Meditation program

When beginning your meditation planning the first and very important step is to clearly understand WHY you are taking up this practice. What is it that sparked your interest? What benefits are you working towards? And what is your vision of how things will be when you have achieved success with your practice? This is important because it is so easy to become distracted and lose consistency when starting anything new.


By having a clear understanding of your “why” or what your purpose is will give you positive momentum to stay strong with your development? What is it that is driving you to follow through with your goals remember to be clear and specific?


To experience internal motivation and keep your momentum moving forward through the ups and downs it is crucial to have a meaningful “Why”. Coming back to this purpose will often give you the strength needed to achieve what you set out to do. If you have a heart felt meaningful why, you will be much more driven and motivated to push through the many struggles that will follow and succeed with your goals.


A few examples of meaningful Why’s with your meditation program:


1- Building healthy relationships

2- Learning how to deal with stress

3- Wanting to become more present

4- Learning how to control anger

5- Becoming more focused

6- Finding creative inspiration

7- Spiritual growth

8- Finding peace

9- Being in tune with emotional triggers and knowing how to respond to them


meditation program


These are just a few examples of hundreds. The idea is to be honest with yourself and find the most meaningful why for you. It might be that there is only one motivation that drives you to become successful or maybe you have many this is not what is important.


The most powerful “whys” are the ones that hit closest to home.


If you have found success with using this strategy with your meditation practice and would like to learn more about building your own meditation program enter your Click Here to learn how to build the perfect meditation program for you.




In the fast pace society we live in today it is easy to become distracted and lose our awareness. So many of life’s hidden treasures come from the subtle often over looked gifts that we are presented with daily. Through teaching meditation anxiety, depression, stress and other negative distractions will fade and have less of an influence on our emotional states.

As adult’s we understand that these distractions occur and have the intelligence to make adjustments to help keep them at bay. Children however often do not understand when they are stressed or distracted and this can lead to misbehavior, poor performance and unhappiness.

teaching meditation

Teaching Meditation is one of the best solutions for this problem. It will allow them to increase their awareness, focus and concentration giving them a clear mind to be happy and present.

A school district in San Francisco started teaching meditation programs to help troubled teens. The goal was to have them using meditation for short periods to help them reduce their stress levels and build their focus in hopes to improve their performance at school.

The results of the program were awesome. The attendance rate of the students increased by 98% and there was a 79% decrease in suspensions. There was also a noticeable improvement in the students grade point average at the end of the year.

Another notable school meditation program out of New Haven, Connecticut required teaching meditation and yoga three times every week for their incoming freshmen. This study found that after every session students were less stressed and had reduced levels of cortisol, a stress hormone, in the body.

There are schools all across the country starting to implement these practices.

Meditation offers endless benefits and everyone can benefit from the practice. The most common misconception people have is that they do not have enough time to start a meditation practice. You do not need hours a day to experience great results from meditation.  There is an old Zen saying I really like it says:

You should sit in meditation for 20 minutes every day unless you are too busy then you should sit for an hour.”

Yes sitting for 20 minutes a day is great and be refreshing. The great thing about meditation is that there are hundreds of practices that you can use throughout your day that take very little time. I call these practices active meditations or daily resets. They can be done in as little as 2-3 minutes and some of them can be done anywhere.

To learn more about how easy it is to build a personalized meditation program that fits your life style check out these three free videos that will help you start building your own practice.

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8 Steps for building strong relationships

I was having dinner with a couple of friends the other night. The conversation, food, atmosphere was all great. I truly enjoy good quality time with the people I value and care about. The reason I bring this up is right next to us was a large table of eight young twenty somethings probably in college. A good part of their evening I noticed was spent with their faces glued to their cell phones. Now I know we all have times where we need to be connected, but I remember going out with my friends in college laughing, talking and building strong relationships and bonds many of which have lasted over 20 years.


strong relationships DisconnectedI am not trying to say that we were any better than anyone else, but I do think often the youth of today is getting lost in technology and further away from true personal connections and deep relationships.

Here are few important things to think about in order to build and maintain deep meaningful relationships:

1- Realize that there are great people everywhere. You should never feel the need to settle for anything short of true happiness.

2- Be clear about your future expectations. Who would you like to be connected with? What direction are you moving towards with your life? What are your core beliefs and values?

3- Start building relationships around activities you are passionate about skiing, running, yoga, martial arts, book clubs etc…

4- Do your friends connect well with other important people in your life? It is rare to have deep relationships with people when they cannot connect well with other important people in your life.

5- Make sure to pay attention to their behavior. Are they considerate, kind and warm hearted or are they easily angered, flakey and self-centered? Noticing these behaviors in the beginning will save you time and unneeded discomfort later.

6- Listen to your heart. Often your intuition will lead you in the correct direction.

7- Know that you always have a choice. NEVER feel guilted in to having to spend time with someone.

8- When you are fortunate enough to be around those you care about make sure to be attentive, considerate and present. When someone knows you are present and that they can truly trust you then you will be at the beginning of good fruitful relationship.

Strong relationships are invaluable.

By practicing meditation you will become more aware of your actions and of those around you. Many of us get so caught up in our busy day to day activities that we lose sight of the subtle gifts that are presented to us every day. Meditation is so easy to build in to your life and offers endless rewards if you are not currently practicing or would like to deepen your practice check out the Meditation Mastery Plan and see how easy it is to build a meditation practice just enter your mane and email to the right and get started with your first lesson today.

Lung Breathing

This is a great active meditation practice to learn and add to your meditation toolbox. Exercising the lungs is important for maintaining good health. If you do not actively exercise the lungs they become stiff this lack of activity can lead to disease.

Then average adult uses about 10% of their lung capacity in a single breath. This is called tidal volume, which is about .5 liters of air. But the lungs have the capacity to hold about 4-6 liters of air, which is close to 10 times the tidal volume or average breath. This will vary from person to person depending on their health, level of physical activity, gender, size, age, smoking habits and even will vary according to the elevation they live in.

If you work at a desk for example and spend 8 hours a day hunched over a computer with poor posture and no regard to your breath you are suffering whether you see it or not. If this is you this exercise will be life changing for you. By having poor posture in a stationary position such as this you will only be using the front side of your lungs and a small percentage at that. This can lead to respiratory disease, allergies, asthma and even lung cancer.

To begin this practice start by establishing a deep relaxed breath expanding the lungs and stretching the lung tissue.  Inhale and bring in as much air as possible without making yourself tight. Then exhale and let yourself melt releasing every ounce of tension in your body. This exercise can be done either standing or sitting in an up-right position. Make sure to maintain a good posture and don’t let yourself collapse as you move into deeper relaxation.

Now after you have found your rhythm and your breathing is smooth start to roll your shoulders back. First, focus on breathing into the backsides of the lungs by inhaling as your shoulders are circling up and back. Having the shoulders in the rear position will release tension across the back of the lungs giving them more room to expand and stretch. Do this for at least 6-12 slow deep breaths.

Next change direction, focusing on breathing into the front sides of the lungs. This time roll the shoulders forward and down as you inhale. Do this 6-12 times with a slow relaxed breath.

To focus on the sides of the lungs lean slightly over to your left side making the left side of the body soft and lightly stretching the right side of the body. Now breathe deeply and focus on expanding the left lung. Do again for about 6-12 deep relaxed breaths then repeat on your right side.

Try it and let us know how you are doing with it. Good luck with your practice.


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Candle Training for Meditation

Meditation is important for attaining high levels of success among athletes. Candles were once a popular tool for developing Concentration, Jin (release of power) and Qi (energy) during martial arts training. This candle training is rarely seen today, but can add great value to your meditation practice. I will show you a few examples in this article of how candles can be used to deepen your meditation practice and fine tune your energetic coordination.

1 – Concentration Training

The most popular use of the candle in a meditation practice is to visually focus on its flame in order to enhance mental concentration. To start, sit in a dark room and watch a lit candle as you meditate. Focus on the flame; try to notice every detail of how the flame moves. Do this for at least 20 minutes. When in a high-level competition, leading a team, or looking for creative inspiration it is essential to be in the moment and notice every single detail to deliver your best response.

In the beginning you will notice that following the flame is not easy and even a few minutes can be quite challenging. Through consistent practice you will be able to develop and maintain focus and concentrate both visually and with your mind.

Once you have reached this elevated level of practice you can then place the candle on a swinging platform, which will carry the candle gently back and forth across your field of vision. Practicing the same exercise with the swinging candle will require a stronger focus, thus enhancing your ability to stay present. When it is easy to maintain focus on the swinging candle now try moving around the candle with your body using movement based meditation and again repeating the same focus.

After you have completed this concentration training you will be able to reach deeper levels of focus than before, maintain higher levels of awareness, and elevate your spirit.

2 – Jin Training

Another popular use of candle training among martial artists is Jin training (referred to as the release of power) which is focusing the movement of energy through your body and extending that power beyond. Martial artists use this training to develop powerful punches and kicks, but it can also be used in other sports that have direct contact, throw objects, or hit balls such as: golf, baseball and tennis.

To begin this candle training exercise stand about one arm’s length distance away from the candle and, with your arm extended, leave about 5 inches between your closed fist and the candle. Concentrate on generating power beyond your fist and focus on using it to extinguish the flame. If you can focus your mind and generate enough power the air influenced by your punch will put out the flame.

After you have practiced for a while, this should become fairly easy.  Try to slowly lengthen the distance between your fist and the flame. If you build up the power and focus to put out the flame from one foot away your Jin practice will be quite powerful.

3 – Qi training

The use of the candle was commonly used by practitioners of the meditative arts to focus the Qi and train the concentration of the mind. When the mind is brought to a high level of focus, then Qi becomes abundant and strong.

“Simply sit in front of the candle and form your hand in the sword secret. Sword secret hand is done by extending your second and the middle finger while touching your ring finger and pinky to the thumb. This hand form will allow the Qi to extend beyond the fingers. In practice, you simply place your extended fingers in front of the flame about two inches away. Without moving your hand, coordinate the breathing and extend your Qi beyond the fingers, trying to make the flame move.”

There have been many scientific studies that indicate bioelectricity is related to Qi, and the external effects of Qi manifestation are caused by the interaction between bioelectricity and the surrounding environment. When performing the candle training you can see this when this electricity is led to the fingers and generates disturbances in the air, which causes the wind to move the candle flame. This takes a high level of focus and sometimes years to master.

Use these methods for your practice. Sometimes having different approaches, such as the exercises listed above, will help add inspiration and focus to your training. Have fun with your practice and let us know how it is working out for you.

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